Not only is February the shortest month of the year, but it is also National Children’s Dental Health Month. We believe that excellent dental hygiene and habits should begin at a very young age, at Family Dentistry of Columbus, we start seeing children as young as 3 years old. Pediatric dentistry is a branch of our practice that is truly a passion.
Pediatric Oral Health is Significant
It is essential to instill positive attitudes toward oral health in children, as these building blocks will stay with them into adulthood, and can last a lifetime. According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD), tooth decay is the most common childhood disease. While most tooth decay is completely preventable with proper oral health, children still have high numbers of cavities and decay.
What Parents Need to Know About Children’s Oral Health
What can parents and guardians do to help prevent children’s teeth from decay and maintain healthy teeth? Follow these important tips to remember to keep your child’s teeth healthy.
- Routine Check-Ups – Just like adults, children should visit the dentist every six months, for cleanings and exams.
- Proper Brushing – Children often cannot brush their own teeth properly or not nearly as well as an adult could. It is important to brush your child’s teeth (up until the age of 5 or 6) at least twice a day. Use fluoride toothpaste to prevent plaque buildup and decay, allowing them to “brush” after you have completed for fun.
- Flossing – Yes, children need to floss! While children are constantly losing and gaining new teeth, it may seem difficult to floss. However, every tooth that is touching another tooth should be flossed. As a child grows older and gains more dexterity, a flossing device suitable for children can be used.
- Toothpaste – Fluoride toothpaste is recommended for brushing. While the amount of fluoride toothpaste varies depending on the child’s age, your dentist/dental hygienist can advise you as to the quantity. As a reminder children under two years old should use a fluoride free toothpaste because they tend to eat the toothpaste. Once children learn to spit out the toothpaste into the sink they can switch to a fluoride paste.
- Healthy Diet – A well-balanced diet consisting of healthy proteins and vegetables is important to not only your child’s overall health but also their oral health. Limit the quantities of sugary snacks, sodas, and items high in acidity.
Family Dentistry of Columbus
Let February’s National Children’s Dental Health Month be a reminder to you and your family to schedule appointments for your children. We strive to enhance the dental health and well-being of all of the community. Contact us to learn more about our services or what we can do for your dental health needs.